Who we are
We are Healius Pathology Pty Ltd (ACN 007 190 043) We provide pathology services to patients and commercial clients.
We have a number of trading names around Australia. We trade as:
- Laverty Pathology in New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory;
- Dorevitch Pathology in Victoria;
- QML Pathology in Queensland;
- Abbott Pathology in South Australia;
- Western Diagnostic Pathology in Western Australia and the Northern Territory;
- TML Pathology in Tasmania;
- Kossard Dermatopathologists;
- Genomic Diagnostics;
- Gastrolab; and
- IQ Pathology.
In conducting our business, we collect, use and disclose personal information. We understand the importance to our patients and other persons we test of maintaining privacy in relation to the personal information we hold.
What personal information do we collect and hold?
Personal information is information or an opinion about an identified person, or someone who is reasonably identifiable, whether or not the information or opinion is true and whether the information or opinion is recorded in a material form or not.
The types of personal information we may collect and hold about you include:
|Identity||Billing and administration||Medical|
|Name||Medicare Number||Referring practitioner|
|Address||Insurance membership number||Pathology tests requested|
|Date of Birth||Credit card number||Pathology test results|
|Sex||Pathologist clinical notes|
|Email address||Referring practitioner clinical notes|
|Healthcare identifiers||Disease status|
|Passport number||In the case of genetic testing, genetic information|
How do we collect and hold personal information?
We collect personal information about you in several ways, including from:
- information that is recorded on the pathology request form your health practitioner gives you when recommending that you obtain pathology services;
- other persons or entities who ask us to perform pathology services on your behalf (for example, the hospital/nursing home where you are a patient, a government department or your employer);
- someone who has responsibility for you (your parent, carer or guardian); and
- you directly.
When we receive a request to provide you with pathology services, we create a unique digital medical record for you. Every time we perform a pathology service for you, new information is added to your medical record.
We take reasonable steps to protect patient medical records from misuse, interference and loss and also from unauthorised access, modification and disclosure. These steps include ensuring that our information technology systems and processes comply with the requirements of the National Pathology Accreditation Advisory Council for information communication.
Healius Pathology is subject to a range of rules relating to the periods for which health information and records must be retained. We must generally retain health information about an individual:
- for 7 years from the last occasion on which we provided a health service to the individual – if we collected the information when the individual was 18 years old or older; or
- until the individual turns 25 – if we collected the information when the individual was less than 18 years old.
Why do we need your personal information and what do we do with it?
We collect, maintain, use and disclose personal information about you in order to provide you with appropriate care, treatment and services.
We use the information in your medical record:
We may also disclose your complete pathology medical history, including all pathology results for all pathology services we have ever performed for you (regardless of who requested the relevant pathology services), to a registered health practitioner who requests this. We will only do this if we are satisfied as to the identity of the registered health practitioner, and they confirm to us that this is required solely for them to deliver health care personally to you.
For some specific pathology tests (such as full blood counts, electrolytes, liver function tests and other serology and immunology pathology tests), it is accepted clinical practice that we must give your health practitioner not only the test result for the test your health practitioner has requested but also the results of all tests of the same nature that we have performed for you previously (regardless of who requested those tests). Past results assist your health practitioner to determine whether or not your current test result is abnormal.
In some circumstances, it may be necessary for us to obtain confirmatory testing from a third party laboratory , for highly specialised pathology services, we may need to arrange for a reference laboratory to perform the required pathology services on our behalf or we may seek a second opinion from expert pathologists outside our organisation. These experts and laboratories may be located in countries other than Australia. In these circumstances, we will disclose personal information about you to these third parties for the limited purpose of obtaining the necessary pathology services.
Operating our business
We use, and where necessary disclose, your personal information to manage our accounts and obtain payment for the services we provide. Specifically, we will use and, where necessary, disclose your personal information to obtain payment from, as appropriate, Medicare Australia, you, your private health insurance fund or from any organisation responsible for payment of any part of your account, such as the Department of Veterans Affairs. This may also extend to disclosure of your personal information to a debt collector or a credit-checking agency. We also use, and where necessary disclose, your personal information for data entry and data analytics purposes.
If the circumstances require, we may disclose your personal information to our insurers.
We may use your personal information to:
Teaching and research
We may use your personal information for internal teaching purposes or to monitor, evaluate, plan and improve the services we provide. This may include sending you surveys to provide feedback to us on our services. We will only use de-identified information (information that does not contain any personal details that may reasonably identify you) for these purposes, unless the service we provide is to you.
Entities undertaking research (such as Cancer Councils, universities and pharmaceutical companies) periodically request data from our medical records. We will only provide identified data in response to these requests when authorised to do so by the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth).
We may be required by law to disclose your personal information without your consent. This includes, but is not limited to, statute-mandated notification of certain diseases, subpoenas or other court or tribunal orders, police warrants and health regulator requirements. Such disclosures will be limited to the extent required to meet the legal obligation.
What happens if we do not collect your personal information?
If you don’t provide us with all the personal information we request, we may not be able to provide pathology services to you. We aim to only collect as much personal information from you as we need to provide you with services and to allow us to obtain payment for those services.
Do we transfer personal information overseas?
We may disclose your personal information to wholly owned subsidiaries of our parent company, Healius Ltd, or to third parties, which are based overseas including, but not limited to, the United Kingdom, the European Union, the United States, Mexico, Georgia, India, Malaysia and the Philippines. These companies provide billing, payment and other administrative services, data-entry and data analytics and IT support services to us. We may disclose personal information as part of a limited range of specialised tests sent to reference laboratories based in the UK, Hong Kong and the USA. We take reasonable steps to ensure that these companies do not breach the requirements of the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) and other State and Territory legislation that may be applicable.
Can you access your personal information we hold?
You may request access to the personal information we hold about you. You can also request that corrections be made to it. We will respond to your request within a reasonable time.
There are some circumstances where we are not required to give you access to or correct your personal information. We will normally give you a written notice setting out our reasons for not complying with your request and informing you of how you can complain about our refusal.
There is no fee for requesting access to your personal information or for us to make corrections. However, we may charge a fee for our costs involved in collating and providing you with access to any personal information. If charged, that fee is payable before access is given.
What to do if you would like to make a complaint about a breach of the Australian Privacy Principles
If you have any concerns about how we handle your personal information or you wish to make a complaint on the basis that we have breached the Australian Privacy Principles prescribed by the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth), please contact us. If you would like to make a complaint, you will need to send us a written complaint (see details below).
We will endeavour to respond to your complaint within a reasonable time after it is made.
How to contact us